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09/27/09 02:01 PM  
Brett C. ferment issue
Working with WY Brett C. and just racked my second 100% brett beer. Unfortunately the beer did not attenuate as much as I had hoped and I'm looking for some insight/advice.


8.5# Belg. Pils

1# wheat

1# Acid malt

-mashed 148-149 degrees for 90 min.

-racked on top of a brett C. yeast cake (1st gen) from previous brew which fermented down nicely 1046 to 1009 (7.5# pils, .5# wheat, .25# carapils

This most recent brew only fermented down to 1016 (WAY to high IMO). Still tastes great even flat, but was hoping for a drier product. After looking back at my notes, I did not aerate this beer at all while I aerated the first batch with 60sec. pure oxygen. Could lack of oxygen be the reason why the brett did not ferment down enough on this second brew? There was definitely enough yeast to ferment it and I let it sit for 4 wks. before kegging. Should I pitch a different Brett into the beer to finish up those last few gravity points I want and funk it up more?

Any ideas/advice would be greatly appreciated. My yeast thanks you!

09/28/09 06:47 AM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
I found C to be a bit more fickle than L in my limited experience. It took quite a while for it to ferment my beer down to 1.010. Lack of O2 shouldn't be an issue as brett can ferment in a anaerobic state no problem (in fact, I didn't aerate any of my 100% brett beers). I think even if you racked, it'll get it down, just give it some more time. What temp did you ferment at? I found C really needs to get up into the upper 70s to keep chugging.
09/28/09 07:34 AM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
I fermented between 64-68 degrees fairly steadily. I guess I just wanted to get it off the yeast cake. It looked down as the majority of the yeast had flocced out although the beer was still quite hazy from suspended yeast. I guess I will let it sit for another 2 wks. as warm as possible and then take a reading. Maybe I will wrap a brew belt around my corny or something to get the temps up.
Rob B
09/28/09 03:43 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
My brett c beer had a starter and O2 and took nearly 3 mos to attenuate. I would have left your beer on the yeast longer.
09/28/09 05:45 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
Do you think I will be able to get another 6-7 points shaved off the gravity even after racking it to a keg if I just warm it up? Or am I better off throwing another type of brett in there and let it age for a few months? Any thoughts?
Rob B
09/29/09 01:07 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
I would think you could get a few more points but it will probably take awhile now that it has been racked. Definitely warm it back up and let it sit for awhile.
09/29/09 06:37 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
Well, I think since I have already racked off the yeast cake, then I maybe SOL on getting those yeast to finish their meal. I bet I could probably get a few more points off it, but I mashed low at 148-149 and that FG should be between a 1010 and 1005, not a 1016! Lesson learned with keeping the beer on the brett longer even though my first batch finished in under 5 wks. I guess I should've taken a gravity reading before kegging to make sure the yeast finished their line of duty!

Sooooo, I think I will throw a packet of WY Brett Lambicus in there and just wait it out a few months for some increased complexity, and at 1016 there is DEFINITELY enough residual sugars for the new brett L. to feast on.

Caped Brewsader
10/07/09 03:52 AM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
I don't want to hijack the thread but it looks like it died and I have a related question. My first all brett brew is in the fermenter and I have a quick question about where you guys think the FG could/should end up at. Its my munich based IPA that I split. Half got the normal US-05 and the other half got a large pitch of Wyeast Brett C. The brew is 1.056 OG, mashed at 67C (152.6F ... call it 153F). After 3 weeks in the fermenter I opened it up to dry-hop and the SG was already down to 1.013. I had expected the ferment to be a bit slower than usual from all that I had read about Brett C. Should I expect this to go down much more? I was theoretically aiming for about 1.010 or so, since brett C isn't a super attenuater. Normally I wouldn't be asking and I would just wait to see where it ends up, but I would like this brew to be ready for a homebrew gathering on Nov 7th to be served next to the "normal" version. So I will need to bottle it either this coming Sunday the 11th of october (when I bottle the US-05 half), or the next sunday if you think it will need the extra week. Later than that and I will be cutting it too close for the bottles to be ready. And should I perhaps prime a little on the light side just incase? Any thoughts? Oh and by the way, the hydrometer sample was smelling and tasting pretty f'ing great! I didn't get the pineapple but it has a wonderful low earthy must with some subdued fruit and berries. A very nice pairing of the Brett C with munich malt and Nelson Sauvin hops! I impressed myself! a little info on the brew at http://smokingbottle.wordpress.com/2009/09/18/feeling-the-funk/
Rob B
10/07/09 12:37 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
I have only done a handful of brett beers and they were some single(brett c) and some combinations including dregs and most of them have finished between 1.007 and 1.009. I have also talked with Ron from Jolly Pumpkin and Vinnie from RR and they have both said most of the time brett beers will finish around 1.007-1.008.

My brett c started out as a huge pineapple bomb but after about 4-6 months in the secondary it lost most of the pineapple.

10/07/09 02:45 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
Unless you are going to extended aging, I think the 100% brett beers (esp. BrettC) will finish in the 1.010-1.015 (ie. typical sach yeast) beer range unless you use a bunch of raw sugar then I would say more in the belgian range of dry (1.006-1.010).

combinations of microbs and real extended aging can go to superattenuation.

I didn't get any pineapple on my 100%brettC beer. petec

10/07/09 11:34 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
For those that have done Brett C as a primary yeast, how long of a lag did you have before primary fermentation really kicked in?

I just brewed my first all Brett C (w/ a starter) beer Monday and am still waiting after 2 days for any sign of activity. It looks like some lacto is starting to kick in though. . .

Caped Brewsader
10/08/09 03:42 AM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
ok, so it sounds like the beer is pretty close to, or at, terminal gravity. Bottling on Sunday should be good. I will still prime it just a little on the light side for two reasons: I like the funky beers with a little less CO2, and just incase there is a bit more fermentation. Of course, if I check the gravity and its still at 1.013 then I should be able to safely say that its done. Thanks for the input guys!

And Jaymo, as I posted on my blog, i didn't see activity until the third day. I also read many blogs where others were also seeing a 3 day lag time.

10/08/09 06:39 AM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
Unless you severely underpitched, the beer should finish within a month. petec is right on on where you should expect TG to be. The lowest I got was 1.009 with Brett L and that was with a few months of aging and the addition of oak and wine (which kicked up some activity, not sure why).
10/08/09 12:43 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
Jaymo, be sure and get your brettC ferment nice and warm. My starters had trouble unless they were in the 70s. 60s was little to no activity.

also, if you didn't make a starter, it'll take even longer to ramp up and get going.


10/08/09 03:02 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
<<also, if you didn't make a starter, it'll take even longer to ramp up and get going.>>

A while back somebody reported on a Berliner made from BrettC but without the benefit of an AlB dose of yeast. She made a conventional starter. My version of the beer was completely fermented out in well under a week. Her's did not start going for nearly 3 months!

10/08/09 07:41 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
Starting another round of double brett beers WY L. and C. Can I expect more conventional fermenttation times at higher temps? Like around low 70's or so? Or will I be risking some fusels in there? I fermented my starters in the mid to high 70's and they both smell great!
10/08/09 07:48 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue

Even mashing at a low 148 degrees for 90 minutes will only get a brett C. beer down to 1010-1015? that seems awfully high for how many residual sugars are left behind. What if another brett species is pitched on top of a high remaining gravity (ie 1016)? Will that second brett take it down further, or I would I be better off pitching an active starter of some neutral ale yeast to finish things up? I don't mind giving the second pitch of brett its due time to drop the gravity 8-10 points....

Caped Brewsader
10/23/09 04:23 AM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
brwinhard, how did your beer end up?

I did end up bottling my Brett C IPA that sunday. It had finished out in 4 weeks. I don't have my notes with me but it I think it ended either at 1.013 or 1.012. Tasted the first bottle last night (after 2 weeks in the bottle). Wow, nice brew! I am glad I cut the dry hops in half for the brett version. There is a definite hop note but the earthy and lightly fruity brett is able to punch through. It mixes very nicely with the bold gooseberry fruitiness of the Nelson Sauvin hops. Add a nice malty back bone from the munich base and you really have a combo made in heaven. The interesting thing with bottling this beer is that the brett version carbed up and cleared up in the bottle very quickly while the US-05 half is still carbing up and is very hazy. The brett flocculated out quickly and is sticking nicely to the bottom. I didn't expect that. In fact I expected just the opposite.

10/25/09 01:27 PM  
Re: Brett C. ferment issue
When I was at the Vermont brewer's festival this summer in Burlington, I got to sample a BrettIPA called Brettzilla. The beer was a very interesting clash of hops, brett, and malt. If my memory serves me right, I think they were using brett B. The beer was one of the more interesting and memorable brews I got to taste there.
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